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What is Gynecomastia and What Causes It?

As young men go through puberty, their bodies change. They grow taller, develop muscles, and body hair sprouts up. One side effect of the hormonal changes that their bodies are going through is often gynecomastia. This completely natural process is usually short lived, and the young adult doesn’t even notice it happening. However, there are certain dangerous drugs, such as Risperdal, that can cause this condition to worsen and lead to severe lasting consequences.

What is Gynecomastia?

Simply put gynecomastia is the growth of breasts in males. But this page is talking about a narrower interpretation of this condition.

Young men will undergo a number of hormonal changes as they go through puberty. However, as those changes are occurring, many will have a surge in testosterone, estrogen, and even prolactin levels. These levels change rapidly and even change within the day. When the prolactin levels remain elevated for too long, that is when gynecomastia can occur.

What is Prolactin?

Prolactin is one of many hormones found in the human body. While everyone has some, it is more often associated with young women, and new mothers who are nursing.

The body’s reaction to increased prolactin is to cause the breasts to swell, and milk production to begin. As young mother nears the date she is to give birth, the levels of this hormone increase rapidly in order to allow her to properly feed and care for her new child.

When the levels of this hormone increase in a young man, the effect is the same as in a new mother. The male develops breasts and if left unchecked, will start to produce milk.

Risperdal Leads to Gynecomastia

Risperdal is a popular antipsychotic medication. It is used primarily to treat schizophrenia, but may also be prescribed to those suffering from depression, bipolar disorder, or used to help level out irritability in autistic children. The problem is that one of the natural reactions to this drug is to increase prolactin levels. As we learned up above, prolactin leads to gynecomastia.

Treatment for Gynecomastia

There is no known reversal drug for young men who have grown breasts. In fact, the only treatment is to have a breast reduction surgery. In order to reverse the effects, the young man must have a costly surgery that will leave permanent scars on his body.

Since naturally occurring gynecomastia is incredibly rare, most young men will never suffer from it. However, those who are taking Risperdal are highly likely to. They will not only experience teasing and shaming because they suffer from a mental illness, but they are also subject to bullying and taunting by being a boy with breasts. Risperdal use leads to not only physical scars, but mental ones as well.

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney

If you have used Risperdal, and you have suffered from gynecomastia, you may be able to file a Risperdal lawsuit. Contact a personal injury attorney right away to discuss what your options may be.

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